Non-profit organizations often operate with a limited budget and a small workforce. Add to that the long hours that are required for fundraisers and special events, and you have a recipe for staff burnout. By staying aware and encouraging self-care, you can help your employees stay happy, healthy, and committed to your organization’s mission.
Chances are your staff is dedicated and passionate about your cause. This commitment is great for the organization, but it can also cause employees to ignore their own needs and limits. This is where you come in use your position to insist on regular, scheduled periods away from work. You might require workers to take two 15-minute breaks each day, or encourage them to use vacation time rather than bank it. After your team puts on a big event, give everyone an unexpected day off. To help workers make the most of this downtime, prohibit them from taking work-related calls and emails.
In many non-profits, the workload is more than the staff can handle. If this is true for your organization, look to your non-profit’s volunteers. Find people to come in a few hours a week to answer phones, complete paperwork, update social media profiles, or reply to emails. In the process, you can alleviate staff workloads and provide valuable experience for volunteers. More active participants also expand and strengthen your community, which can pay off in new connections, fresh ideas, and potential new staff members.
Employees are your organization’s most important resource. Take care of them and show your appreciation by using some of your funding to help prevent non-profit burnout. Speak to the board about setting up free in-office doctor visits, gym memberships, or education reimbursement. Look to your staff for ideas to make their lives easier they might benefit from services such as childcare, laundry service, or employee retreats. By investing in your employees’ well-being, you can build loyalty and promote mental and physical health.